A significant level of collaboration has been happening over the past few weeks. The Reasoning & Relationships central study has joined with Sustainable Futures to engage students in the ‘Earth Summit’. The proposal?

“We agree that agreements between countries and companies in land acquisition must stop. Millions of hectares of fertile land have been acquired through these deals, displacing local food production for export interests. We propose that all countries be responsible for the provision of food for their own citizens and excess food production be used for exporting. Countries will not be able to purchase land in foreign countries to secure food unless that foreign country has excess food production and land.”

The task? Students have formed into groups to take on the role of a country or organisation to develop an informed response to the proposal stated above. Students have been actively engaged in researching relevant data and statistics for their chosen group and are now in the process of finalising three different perspectives to help structure their responses. The financial, futures, and humanistic perspective are all being developed through use of mathematical and scientific analysis of their researched information to develop a logical, coherent, and powerful argument either for or against the proposal.

Final presentation of their position will be made on Wednesday 13th November where students will be tasked with peer reviewing displays of other countries. However this is just the beginning! Having developed their understandings of global issues around food security, student groups will participate in the official Earth Summit. A mock United Nations summit in which each country and organisation will have their say in response to the proposal. It is at this time that the secret alliances, amendments, and otherwise shady wheeling and dealings come to the fore and the battle for control of global food assets really gets interesting.